The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) provides duty-free treatment to goods of designated sub-Saharan African countries (SSAs). The program dates from 2000 and has the goal of promoting economic growth through good governance and free markets. It covers non-textile as well as textile goods and was most recently re-authorized through September 30, 2025.
Some 5,240 tariff items are eligible for AGOA benefits. In order to benefit from AGOA, a good must be either wholly obtained (grown, fished, mined, etc.) or sufficiently manufactured in an AGOA country. Sufficiently manufactured means that all 3rd-country materials have undergone a substantial transformation and at least 35% of the good’s value is added in the beneficiary country, with up to 15% of that value attributable to U.S. inputs. Additionally, the good must be “imported directly”.
Merchandise Processing Fee
Per 19 CFR 24.23(c)(1), textile goods, which are entered using HTSUS 9819, and all goods of Least Developed Beneficiary Developing Countries (LDBDCs) (HTSUS General Note 4(b)(i)) are exempt from merchandise processing fee (MPF).
Special Program Indicator
Beginning in 2017 eligible tariff items are identified by the symbol “D” in the “Special” sub-column of the HTSUS.
Citations and Resources
- Prosper Africa: Prosper Africa is a U.S. Government initiative to increase two-way trade and investment between the U.S. and countries in Africa. Prosper Africa brings together services and resources from across the U.S. Government to empower businesses and investors with market insights, deal support, financing opportunities, and solutions to strengthen business climates.
- HTSUS General Note 16
- Regulations 19 CFR 10.171, 10.173 – 10.178; 19 CFR 10.178a; 19 CFR 10.211 – 10.217
- “Imported directly” is defined in 19 CFR 10.175
- 19 USC 2462 - Designation of Beneficiary Developing Countries
- Public Law 106–200 106th Congress – Trade and Development Act of 2000
- H. R. 1295 - Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015
- AGOA on USTR Website
- AGOA on US International Trade Administration Website
- CBP Informed Compliance Publication: What Every Member of the Trade Community Should Know About: African Growth and Opportunity Act (2003)
- Request for Public Comments, AGOA Annual Review of Country Eligibility for Calendar Year 2017